Canada’s novel coronavirus recovery numbers saw a significant boost on Friday as the province of Quebec tweaked the way it counts recoveries, adding thousands of resolved cases in one day.
Quebec is now reporting nearly 50,000 recoveries, while overall there are more than 96,000 resolved cases across the country.
The Institut national de santé publique du Québec (INSPQ) said it’s using a new way to calculate recoveries as of Friday. The previous method resulted in “significant underestimations” of recovered cases.
This means 88 per cent of Canada’s total tally of 109,645 COVID-19 cases are considered recovered as of Friday.
Meanwhile, the country reported 409 new cases on Friday, mostly from Quebec and Ontario, along with 12 deaths. Quebec remains the highest contributor to Canada’s national caseload and overall death toll.
Deputy chief public health officer Howard Njoo called the recent surge in Canada’s cases worrying and possibly linked to young people gathering in bars and at parties.
“When we examine recent trends in case reporting, there is some cause for concern. After a period of steady decline, daily case counts have started to rise,” he told a briefing.
More than 400 cases were reported in Canada on Thursday, for instance, with spikes in Quebec, Alberta and Saskatchewan.
Friday saw Quebec record 141 cases, for a total of more than 57,000 cases. The death toll rose by one, to 5,647. The province has seen daily cases top 100 since July 11.
Premier François Legault said bars will not be shut down for now, as the recent spike in cases seems to stem from private parties as opposed to bars.
Ontario reported 111 new cases and nine new deaths, bringing total figures to more than 37,000 cases and more than 2,700 deaths. Nearly 90 per cent of Ontario’s cases are considered recovered.
Friday continued that trend. The total caseload in Alberta now rests at more than 9,200 cases, with 859 active ones, and 167 deaths.
British Columbia reported 28 new cases, the highest single-day total since early May, and no new deaths, leaving B.C. with 3,181 confirmed cases.
The province’s health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said the number of exposures linked to private parties in Kelowna has grown to 35. There are also outbreaks at a work camp and a neonatal ICU.
Saskatchewan grew closer to 1,000 cases on Friday, as 13 new cases were announced. Hospitalizations have increased from three on Monday to 12 on Friday. Fifteen people have died so far in the province.
Manitoba saw five new cases, all from one Hutterite colony, bringing the provincial caseload to 320 confirmed cases. Seven people have died so far.
All four Atlantic provinces have once again reported no new cases on Friday. New Brunswick is left with three active cases, with no new ones reported on Friday.
Nova Scotia has seen 63 deaths and more than 1,000 cases. It has two active cases at the moment. Newfoundland and Labrador is showing no active cases, with its last new case reported July 10.
Prince Edward Island has 36 cases, 29 of them considered recovered.
The Northwest Territories has no new cases, while Yukon public health officials announced that two of the territory’s residents contracted COVID-19 while travelling in another province.
“They have a mild illness and are recovering in self-isolation,” a statement said. “They will return to Yukon once they are no longer infectious.”
“We were anticipating that we would have cases among Yukoners and these two cases do not change the risk for Yukon,” said Yukon’s acting chief medical officer of health Dr. Catherine Elliott.
“These persons were not infectious while in Yukon.”
Nunavut announced two presumptive cases of COVID-19 on July 15, with lab confirmation expected next week.
Worldwide, the coronavirus has resulted in nearly 14 million cases and more than 590,000 deaths, according to data tracked by Johns Hopkins University. The U.S. has the highest caseload and death toll in the world, followed by Brazil.
— With files by Reuters, The Canadian Press and Global News reporter Kalina Laframboise